25 And that is what the soldiers did. Meanwhile, standing near the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing beside her, he said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” 27 Then he said to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his own home. – John 19:25-27 NRSV
Mary Our Mother
The episode mentioned in this passage is one that is only mentioned in John’s Gospel. Matthew, Mark, and Luke have no mention of it for good reason. John was the only disciple that stuck with Jesus during the crucifixion, and there he witnessed an amazing exchange.
Watching the savior of the world in agony on the cross must have been amazing enough, but he also witnessed a son loving his mother. In his final moments he wanted to make sure that his mother was taken care of. He tells John “Son, behold your mother”.
This would not have happened if Mary had other children. In fact, it would have broken Mosaic law to do so. It was the responsibility of the eldest son to take care of mom, and if something would have happened it would go to the next oldest.
We Can Learn A Lot
There are a couple observations to take from this passage. Firstly, Mary had no other children which would go to prove Church teaching about her perpetual virginity. Secondly John takes care of Mary as his own mother. John’s mom was still alive during the crucifixion, and yet Jesus hands her over to him.
As Christians we are adopted sons, and therefore Jesus is also giving Mary to us as our mother. Christ is the head of the church, and Mary is his mother, as adopted sons she is our mother. She is the mother of the Church. Behold your mother.
If anyone does not wish to have Mary Immaculate for his Mother, he will not have Christ for his Brother. -St. Maximilian Kolbe
As sailors are guided by a star to the port, so Christians are guided to heaven by Mary. – St. Thomas Aquinas
Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin too much. You can never love her more than Jesus did.
–St. Maximilian Kolbe
For God, having given her power over his only-begotten and natural Son, also gave her power over his adopted children – not only in what concerns their body – which would be of little account – but also in what concerns their soul.–St. Louis Marie de Montfort
If anyone does not believe that Holy Mary is the Mother of God, such a one is a stranger to the Godhead.
–St. Gregory Nazianzen, Father and Doctor of the Church
Even while living in the world, the heart of Mary was so filled with motherly tenderness and compassion for men that no-one ever suffered so much for their own pains, as Mary suffered for the pains of her children.”
–St. Jerome, Father and Doctor of the Church